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Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2010-08-18 13:40
In a big positive and under-reported Google privacy precedent, Google now has agreed to a new important privacy protection principle that people should be able to opt out of having their homes included in Google's StreetView. Just yesterday in Germany, Google went live with a new StreetView op-out offering for Germans.
First, if it is a good consumer protection principle and option for German citizens, why shouldn't it be a good policy and freedom for all citizens to enjoy in the 23 countries where Google has rolled out StreetView?
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2010-07-22 16:25
The fateful policy decision by the FTC/DOJ to exclude privacy as a factor in antitrust enforcement has fostered a perverse market dynamic where many online advertising companies now effectively compete on the basis of who can most take advantage of consumer privacy fastest, rather than compete on the basis of who can best protect consumer privacy.
This analysis will show:
I. Implications of exempting privacy from antitrust enforcement.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2010-07-21 13:12
37 States are now involved in a "powerful multi-state investigation" of "Google's Streetview snooping" per a press release from investigation leader, Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who released a new follow-up letter to Google asking for more information and clarification of its representations to date.
The letter shows the investigation is very serious. Its prosecutorial exactness strongly suggests that investigators believe Google has not been forthright in its answers to date and that it could be covering up material information to the investigation.
What appears to be the most problematic line of inquiry is whether or not Google tested this software before it was used in public to collect private information on consumers.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Fri, 2010-07-09 11:00
In an exceptionally uncharacteristic low-key PR manner for Google, Google announced on its blog in one sentence that China renewed its license to operate in China.
What's the rest of the story here?
Google and China have been at loggerheads with one another in one of the highest-of-profile international standoffs between a private company and a superpower in modern history, since Google publicly accused China in January blogpost of being complicit in a hack of Google that resulted in the theft of Google's intellectual property, (which John Markoff of the New York Times reported was the extremely sensitive computer code for Google's password control system.)
What is the quid pro quo here?
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2010-06-16 12:00
Google has much to lose in its ill-advised PR and public policy war with Apple, its previous closest Silicon Valley ally.
Antitrust or Fiduciary liablility? Google's recent market behavior puts Google and its CEO Eric Schmidt in a lose-lose situation.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2010-06-08 17:28
More specifically, this Zogby poll asked eight timely questions that are highly pertinent to:
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2010-06-07 12:57
Google's CEO Eric Schmidt, dismissed the notion that Google was "arrogant" in an FT interview.
It seems to me that "the arrogance comes across" with Google because Google operates, and expects to operate, under a double standard -- where rules, laws and expectations apply to others, but do not, and should not, apply to Google -- because Google is somehow special.
The latest example of Google's expectation to be treated differently and better than Google treats everyone else -- is Google's "permissions" policy. (See the Goobris Series below for other examples.)
Google's "Total Information Awareness" Power -- A one-page graphic of all the information Google hasSubmitted by Scott Cleland on Fri, 2010-06-04 12:50
To help you picture both the enormity and unprecedented power of what Google knows about you and the world's information: public, private and proprietary, I have organized all the world's information types that Google collects onto a one-page chart/PDF: "Google's 'Total Information Awareness' Power."
For those who really want to understand Google and its impact on most everyone and most everything, please read and study this one-page chart/PDF, because much valuable work and insight has gone into it.
A short refresher on where the term "Total Information Awareness" came from and why it is aptly employed here.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2010-06-02 12:34
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2010-05-26 18:57
Google's long-time cavalier approach to privacy and security are catching up to the company as its latest wardriving privacy scandal, appears to be spiraling out of the control of Google's legendary PR machine.
First, the House Energy and Commerce Committee sent Google a tough investigative letter on its wanton wardriving of the U.S. The most problematic question for Google got to the root of Google's privacy scandals: "What is Google's process to ensure that data collection associated with new products and services offered by the company is adequately controlled?" This line of inquiry makes it clear this is not just a probe of this privacy incident, but of Google's systemic weaknesses in internal/management controls concerning privacy.